Tuesday, November 6, 2007

From C-ville to Points West

The Avon Street Bridge can offer a good view at sunset.

But heading out west, with its offerings of Joshua Tree National Park, Yosemite, and San Francisco, provides escape from reality. Even with all the stunning scenery, there's something unsettling about such a big city in the desert (Phoenix) and parched, burn-scarred pastures (So. California). Although temperatures here dip into the thirties at night, it's comforting to return to a greener part of the country. A reading of The Omnivore's Dilemma prompted consideration of the security inherent in our state's verdure. Here the foliage is maintained by rainfall, even when it wanes as it did this summer, whereas California has mounted an entire agricultural economy based on irrigation.

The book features an organic farm in Swoope, VA, Polyface farm, that provides to some area restaurants and Feast in the Downtown Market. Besides offering food free of pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics, Polyface farm strives to offer food that does not deplete the land or pollute the environment. It also produces this food within a distance that limits the amount of fossil fuel burned to get it here. Sometimes Polyface opens its doors to the public and in the next few months I plan to get there.

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